A piece of property that has been up for retail sale for over 10 years now has a designated use.
Legislation sponsored by Ward 3 council members Dale Kling and Nathan Bibb was approved at the June 27 O’Fallon City Council meeting paving the way for an indoor storage facility to be built at 1160 Technology Drive near Hwy. K in the southern area of the city.
The designated land will be split into two lots. Covington Land Acquisitions II, LLC will acquire Lot A for the storage facility, while the current landowners retain ownership of Lot B for a potential future retail use still to be determined.
The council approved both bills [for rezoning the property and a condition use permit] by a vote of 6 to 3. Council member Tom “Duke” Herweck [Ward 2] had been excused from the meeting. Voting “no” were council members Jeff Kuehn [Ward 4], Rose Mack [Ward 2], and Debbie Cook [Ward 5]. Prior to the votes, Kuehn clarified at length why he opposed the bills.
“This is not the best use of this property,” he said, noting that his opposition is “a matter of timing.” He said that in the near future a better use such as a hotel or commercial building could go there and generate more tax revenue for the city rather than just property tax revenue for the school district. He added that the lack of interest during the Great Recession period 2006-2016 did not mean that low retail interest in the property will continue forever.
Mack pointed out that city staff had said they did not believe this was the best use of the property.
Both bills had first readings at the council’s June 13 meeting, plus a public hearing and public comments, including a robust discussion by residents and council members.